This paper criticizes the view that number words in argument position retain the meaning they have on an adjectival or determiner use (a generalized quantifier or plural property), as argued by Hofweber (Philos Rev 114(2):179–225, 2005) and Moltmann (Philos Stud 162(3):499–534, 2013a, Abstract objects and the semantics of natural language, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2013b). In particular the paper re-evaluates syntactic evidence from German given in Moltmann (2013a, b) to that effect.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT for USA
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.
Dummett, M. (1973). Frege: Philosophy of language. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Frege, G. (1884/1980). The foundations of arithmetic (trans: Austin, J. L.). Second Revised Edition. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.
Hale, B. (2007). Abstract objects. New York: Blackwell.
Hodes, H. (1984). The ontological commitment of arithmetics. Journal of Philosophy, 81, 123–149.
Hofweber, T. (2005). Number determiners, numbers, and arithmetics. Philosophical Review, 114(2), 179–225.
Hofweber, T. (2016). Ontology and the ambitions of metaphysics. Oxford: Oxford UP.
Moltmann, F. (2008). Intensional verbs and their intentional objects. Natural Language Semantics, 16(3), 257–281.
Moltmann, F. (2013a). Reference to numbers in natural language. Philosophical Studies, 162(3), 499–534.
Moltmann, F. (2013b). Abstract objects and the semantics of natural language. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Moltmann, F. (2016). The number of planets: A number-referring term? In M. Rossberg & P. Ebert (Eds.), Abstractionism (pp. 109–133). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Moltmann, F. (2017). Natural language ontology. In Oxford encyclopedia of linguistics. Oxford University Press, Oxford, online.
Oliver, A., & Smiley, T. (2013). Plural logic. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Wright, C. (1983). Frege’s conception of numbers as objects. Aberdeen: Aberdeen University Press.
Yi, B.-Y. (2005). The logic and meaning of plurals. Part I. Journal of Philosophical Logic, 34, 459–506.
Yi, B.-Y. (2006). The logic and meaning of plurals. Part II. Journal of Philosophical Logic, 35, 239–288.
About this article
Cite this article
Moltmann, F. Number words as number names. Linguist and Philos 40, 331–345 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10988-017-9214-y
- Number terms
- Proper names
- Plural reference